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How to value CryptoKitties NFT Collectibles

Posted by
Modesta Jurgeleviciene

The famous cat collecting NFT series will come to Flow

CryptoKitties was the very first blockchain NFT collectible built on the ERC-721 standard back in 2017. Quickly after its release, CryptoKitties attracted a lot of attention and generated large sales. The increased interest resulted in congestion issues on the Ethereum blockchain and eventually resulted in a serious decrease in activity for CryptoKitties. However, this veteran of the NFT space has not been forgotten.

In recent weeks CryptoKitties has started to show increased signs of activity. Although the project is not close to the attention it received in late 2017 according to Google Trends renewed interest comes from two other product developments.

Dapper Labs, the company behind CryptoKitties has launched their blockchain – Flow which has already become the home of the most popular NFT collectible product – NBA Top Shot. Dapper Labs plans to move CryptoKitties over to Flow and it’s envisaged that this transfer might add value to the collection in the future.

Although the collection is relatively old, valuation is still quite a complex topic. There are generations, limited edition Kitties, and more other aspects that determine the value of one of these digital collectibles. Within this overview, we will analyze the valuation of these different CryptoKitties.

Table of contents

  • 2021 transaction sales surpassed $1.2 million 
  • From the top: Gen 0 kitties
  • Value concept by ‘Mewtation’
  • Founder cats are still one of the most valuable ones
  • Exclusivity plays an important role
  • Different types of fancy cats
  • New cats on the block
  • Special edition cats
  • The road ahead

2021 transaction sales $1.2 million+

2021 is likely going to be an important year for CryptoKitties. The plans to move to the Flow blockchain, and additional functionalities introduced by this move, could potentially help boost the project back to its 2017 heights.

In 2021 so far, the platform generated $1.2 million in transaction volume, which is close to the yearly volume of 2020. Therefore we can see a significant increase in activity within the platform. 

There could be several reasons for this. One of those reasons is that users could earn an NBA Top Shot collectible if they also owned one or more CryptoKitties. At the moment NBA Top Shot is attracting thousands of users per day and millions of dollars in transactions. Therefore NBA Top Shot could potentially stimulate an increase in trading activity.

Source: Nonfungible.com

Furthermore, recent NFT sales within the project also look promising. In February 2021 there were two remarkable sales: one Gen 0 kitty sold for more than $64,000, while a fancy kitty changed hands for almost $100,000. CryptoKitties have several different types of kitties, and each of them has a different value. 

From the top: Gen 0 kitties

There are almost 2 million CryptoKitties that differ from one another with multiple attributes and characteristics. Out of this insane amount of digital cats, there are 50,000 (2.5% of current supply) Gen 0 cats. These are the parents, grandparents, or great grand-parents, of all the other cats in the collection. 

Although Gen 0 Kitties were the first ones and have limited supply, they do not currently command the highest. According to kittyhelper.com the most expensive Kitties right now are Diamond or Gilded. Gen 0 kitties have third place by floor price.

Source: kittyhelper.co

Value by “Mewtation”

Gen 0 cats do not have genes that are created by mutating two cats together. These mutations appeared for the first time in the Gen 1 cats. Every new generation of cats has more mutations to be found in Gen 2, Gen 3, and later generations. The diamond gem mutation is the first-ever mutation of a particular kind.  

Diamond gems can only be found in 243 cats. At the moment of writing the floor price of these cats starts at 7 ETH. The second to the tenth cat with a specific genetic mutation receives a golden gem, which is the second-highest valued gene in the collection. This continues with Amethyst and Lapis gems. Cats with these specific gems have a much lower floor price, with pricing starting at 0.065 ETH and 0.007 ETH respectively.

Cats with multiple gems can be very valuable. There are two cats in the entire collection that have two diamond gems each. 

Founder cats still among most valuable 

The first 100 NFTs minted in the CryptoKitties universe, are the so-called Founder Cats. Their value changes by their ID number, and the lower that number the more value the cat has. Also, their genetics place a role in the pricing, and whether the kitten has bred or not. Virgin cats are considered more valuable. Recently, one of the Founder Cats, number 84 to be exact, sold for more than $64,000.

Source. www.cryptokitties.co

During the peak of 2017, Founder Cats #87 sold for more than $80,000. This underlines that CryptoKitties isn’t receiving the same amount of hype just yet as it commanded more than three years ago.

Exclusivity plays an important role

Exclusive cats came into existence at the discretion of the CryptoKitties team for various reasons. They’ve been given out as rewards for contributing to the ecosystem and as prizes for winning competitions. Others, like the Koshkat below, were auctioned off.

The value of these exclusive cats is based on their rarity and age. The cheapest ones were sold for 1 ETH back in January 2021. The highest sales were for almost 10 ETH.

Different types of Fancy cats

Fancy Cats are a series of special cats identified by their unique artwork and badge and are created when users breed a cat with the right combination of traits. Often these Fancy Cats can only be bred during a special timeframe. The value of a fancy cat is a function of its rarity, age, generation, and how early it was discovered.

Source: cryptokitties.co

Currently, the most valuable fancy cat is Schrodinger’s Cat, of which there are only 73. The floor price is 10 ETH, while other kitties are listed for a price between 100 and 500 ETH.

The value of the Prestige cats

Similar to fancy cats, prestige cats are created using a recipe. While fancy cats have dedicated art, prestige kitties can be described as “normal” cats but with distinguishing features based on their genetics. These features will only appear if the cat is bred during a specific time window, or until the prestige’s “cap” is reached. For example, there are prestige cats with antlers, strange hair-dos, robotic parts, weapons, or duck beaks, among others.

Prestige cats are almost always worth less than fancy cats and could be recommended to new collectors as they are still rare and relatively cheap.

New cats on the block

One of the newest types of cats is the so-called shiny cats.  A shiny cat is a variation of a fancy cat that is very, VERY unlikely to be bred. They are so rare, that some shiny cats will never be discovered because they won’t be found within the allotted breeding window for that fancy cat.

Source: Cryptokitties.co

There are currently only 57 shiny cats, and the listing prices start from 32 ETH.

Special edition cats

Special Edition Kitties are cats with accompanying special artwork that is released for sale in a limited quantity. They’re similar to Exclusive Cats in that they have unique art, but where only a handful of each Exclusive Cat gets created, Special Edition Kitties are released in larger numbers. 

While Special Edition Kitties have genetic traits and can be used to breed new regular cats, players cannot breed these Special Edition cats themselves. They are only available for purchase.

The floor price of these kitties starts at 0.23 ETH. Pricing goes up to 100 ETH.

Source: Cryptokitties.co

The road ahead

CryptoKitties has seen its highest trading activity back in 2017-2018, far before the current NFT hype. So far, the amount of activity CryptoKitties gained during those times has never been reached again. 

Dapper Labs kept launching projects and partnerships around their CryptoKitties brand, resulting in partnerships with for example the rock band Muse. Despite these continuous efforts, the project never reached the pace of the early days. Unlike another well-known blockchain NFT CryptoPunks, the value doesn’t seem to be increasing over time.

However, Dapper Labs plans to move CryptoKitties to their Flow blockchain, potentially painting a brighter future for the first ERC-721 collectibles. 

The plan is to move the collectibles from Ethereum onto the Flow blockchain, which could ignite a renaissance. CryptoKitties-on-Flow will keep all the elements that made CryptoKitties a hit on Ethereum but the developers will add more functionality. 

Dapper Labs has been talking about interoperability between different applications, which could very well change the future of CryptoKitties and ignite a new hunt for rare digital cats.

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